When the Ramadan banner flies, soul restrains nature, so it can taste its own food.
The strength of horses and the intensity of fire,
these are the powers of sacrifice.
Fasting, we honor the guest.
Clouds of courage give rain,
because it was in this month that the Qur’an rained down,
light through an opening.
Grab the rope.
Be lifted out of the body’s pit.
Announce to Egypt, Joseph of Canaan has come.
Jesus dismounts to the donkey,
and the sacramental table descends.
Wash your hands. Wash your face.
Do not eat or speak as you normally do.
Other food and other words will come in the silence.
From the big Red Book
By Coleman Barks
Songs that never stop,
Dance that never ceases,
Poetry that never ends,
In her garden, flowers are blooming tonight.
The dragon of my desires,
woke up this morning.
My body is a battle zone.
An intellectual is all the time showing off,
Lovers dissolve and become bewildered.
Intellectuals try not to drown,
While the whole purpose of love is drowning.
Intellectuals invent ways to rest,
then lie down in those beds.
Lovers feel ashamed of comforting ideas.
You have seen a glob of oil on water?
That is how a lover is with intellectuals, there, but alone in a circle of himself.
Some intellectual tries to give sound advice to a lover,
All he hears back is, I love you, I love you.
Love is musk.
Do not deny it when you smell the scent.
Love is a tree.
Lovers, the shade under the long branches.
To the intellectual mind,
A child must grow up and learn to be an adult.
In the station of love,
You see old men getting younger and younger.
Shams chose to live low in the roots for you,
So now, he soars in the air
as your sublimely articulating love.
From The Big Red Book
By Coleman Barks
Drift away the clouds that cover your sky,
and watch yourself fly,
like a dove.
One beautiful evening
I sat under the palm tree
He wrapped me in his tender arms
And whispered a secret in my ears
And danced on the beat of crazy wind
Together we created a sacred song
Fragrance of his thoughts
Lighter than the wind
Sand smelled more alluring
Grass grew taller
Roses were more red
Doves smiled gracefully
Bulbul sang a new song
Sparrows couldn’t stop talking
Wind kissed my hair
Everyone, in the garden, met him today